I remember when I first watched Aliens, I was taken by how the movie flew by, even at 2+ hours. It was thrilling.
I thought about it later and how well it was made. We had already seen the Alien in the first movie, which was a great cross of the genres of science-fiction and horror films. James Cameron made a different movie by crossing the genres of war film and horror film with Aliens. This was interesting in itself. But he also did another interresting thing: he explored the notions of feminism within the film, or at least, the bonds between mother and daughter. (Just like he explored the notion of Father and Son in Terminator 2.) Cameron is not Renoir or Bergman, but Arnold might not have been joking when during the “Titantic” Oscar he joked about starring in Cameron’s “art films”.
The other interesting thing is the juxaposition between maternalism and the action film genre. The contrast gives the films punch. I am sure Camille Paglia would approve. 🙂 See:
As Andrew Sullivan said, one of the best movie lines ever.